Woohooooooo!!! Ninja Jussie..Queen of the world ;)
Friday 25th Feb
Interesting start to the week ahead as I was coming out in a cold, and really didn't feel well at all. So, was dosing up on cold/flu capsules hoping for a miracle. Driving down to Gosport took forever as a 'Starbucks' pit-stop on the motorway tempted me in (and a cheeky slice of cake). Upon arrival, I still felt poorly and after a little rest, shower...decided just to go out for dinner then sleep. I met up with Nick (from Level 1) and also met Luke and Adrian other chaps part of the Clipper 11-12 and had a lush pub grub then back to the B&B.
Popped some more capsules along with my transplant meds and hoping to wake up feeling better the next day.
Saturday 26th Feb
Today was a course on Radar ...how to read, use the radar machine and so on. Quite technical, but made more sense doing - than actually reading the manual we are sent out before each level's training. I must admit though, each manual does seem like a foreign language and I panic...gulp. But, after doing level 1 and then re-reading the manual again, things did seem easier to understand. I knew that would be the case too - for the week's training on level 2.
So...course now over and time to make my claim for the sleeping quarters on the Clipper 68 foot yacht.....lower bunk past the galley. And an amazing carpet with sails to fall onto in the early hours. Check out the luxury...really back to basics - but you do get used to it - and sharing a floating hotel with up to 20 people. This time, I was sharing with 14 people in total (incl. Skipper, Scott and 1st mate, Flavio).
Also, thankfully my cold was drying out - phew :)
Its a small space to move about and walk all over sails on the floor...balance a must! But, once onboard the yacht you do get used to the living quarters.
I must admit I was quite suprised to learn that no 'watch' system would happen on this level - and that we would get a night's sleep. Level 2 was more technical to learn sailing procedures. Pleasantly quite happy to hear....not going to grumble ;)
Thumbs up all round.
Sunday 27th Feb
Today's sailing started with a hailstone fenzy followed by rain..I actually enjoyed the foul weather. However, I may not be saying that when in gale force winds.....waves crashing over the yacht in rough seas and feeling sick (hopefully not being so). Not sure if you can see the hailstones falling on the deck..
I was on 'mother' duty today with Nick to cook all meals and refreshments throughout the day/night. Breakfast was bacon and scrambled eggs; lunch was cup-a-soups with rolls/butter; dinner a medley of sausages with mustard mash and onion gravy. And, if I do say so myself was totally yummy! If you can't cook - you soon learn how too. Luckily, I can and I can tell you - you get so hungry and eat so much fuel type foods. In the real world - I would never eat as much as we do onboard, but, it's amazing how energy is used throughout the day. Not like a day in the office - sitting at a desk!
And here is moi, the galley assistance demonstrating how to hold a loaf and bread and juggle onions.....onboard entertainment whilst prepping food for the crew. It's a thrill a minute, to create your own in-house humour cooking for the mass in a tiny space.
Here I am with Stefan and Callum chilling for a quick bit before time to tack. And craziness after the hail storm followed glorious sunshine!!? The evening was a pub end, infact, most nights ended with a pub ending. Lime and soda's did well from me. Although, I rarely drink...but failed on the last night to a lil glass wine..shhhhh....
Monday 28th Feb
Peace out baby!
A long day at sea today and full of drills.....tacks, man overboard, sails (yankee,staysail,mainsail) up/down..reefs in/out (main sail) and repeat repeat! I even had a go on the coffee grinder...geesh that was a shock...quite tough actually and I'm sure I will get some arm muscles like Arnie soon enough. At times, I found some things quite physically demanding on my lungs and know I don't have as much lung function as everyone else onboard. So, also working within my limitations too - but sheer determination to try as much as I can do. On some occassions I needed help (thanks) but otherwise felt like GRRrrrrrrrrr I can and will do it.
If I'm honest, I do get frustrated sometimes that my lungs are not like 100% - but I DO appreciate I am still here, still breathing, and do more than people who are perfectly well. And, it will be a case finding a 'role' suitable for me when part of my team. By the end of the week, that position came clear to me..where I would be better suited. Although, Obviously happy to help in other areas too - just good I'm starting to realise my own strengths/weaknesses doing the training.
Here we all all flaking the main sail...."Awooma Awooma...Away" thanks to Flavio's chant to help us get the main sail sorted.
Hard work today and tiring - but still loved it.
Ollie and I demonstrating red apples cores for the latest fruit at sea...how to look kool. NB: anyone tell me how I ate mine with just my eyes showing? Send answers on a postcard...
Glad when we got to moor in and have a shower. I haven't commented on the fast dry towel that everyone has. On level 1, I brought along a regular towel and this time thought would get a fancy quick dry towel. Hmmm....like drying yourself on wet cardboard......comes to mind.
Tuesday 1st March I think I never wrote any notes in my journal for today...so brains gone sparko, so here is a photo instead for today. I really like this pic, as to me it captures a tranquil view at sea and why it is simply stunning being here and being part of the Clipper team.
Wednesday 2nd March
ZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzz......wow! Slept like a baby! Exhaustion and physically demands onboard you can't not sleep as the body needs time to unwind. Infact, I sleep better on the yacht than I do at home! But, you should see me in the morning - puffy watery eyes - sunken like a pumkin ;)
A busy hard day at sea, more drills and some great emotions being at an angle of about 40-45 degrees..check out the photos below. We went from East Cowes to Yarmouth today, and guess where the evening took us!?
I really enjoy meeting new people on the training courses, and a great bond is formed and many laughs shared/stories......everybody has their own background why doing Clipper and no1 person is alike.
Things are now starting to make more sense now from Level 1 - and that makes me feel happy.
Scott at the helm and Phil as good as in the sea ;)
Thursday 3rd/Friday 4th March
Both today and Friday was learning about the spinnacle pole/sail up procedures. Quite an amazing thing - seeing a sail as large as a tennis court go up - truly spectacular!
Some dramas along the way.....having the sail go into the sea and then going below deck with a couple other people to take the sail down and fold back away.
Grabbing hold of a wet sail and seeing the whole yacht being swamped with a sail down below. ....geesh. Four of us took on the task to fold the sail back away. I wanted to do this, and was excited at first....then after minutes of constant rolling...my arms ached and the smile disappeared just a tad. And I looked to see how much was left to roll and it seemed like an endless mile..hahaha......like the never ending sail....but good to be part of this mission ;)
Also, a lot to learn and just when you think you have kinda got your head around the other procedures - then this enormous element is thrown in! yikes! Nevermind Man overboard...for me it was/is a case of Mind overboard..lol
Here is:- Phil, Ailsa, Wendy, Shona, and Ollie having a cuppa moment...
And that's almost a wrap...Friday more like a half day as still need deep clean the yacht which takes a few hours. Some grim jobs - but it needs to be done to keep hygiene/cleanliness at a high standard. Then all cleaned up and ready for another pub visit and a hefty pub meal...oh yes please - yum! Oh as to where I think I should be based (as mentioned earlier in my blog) is the snakepit, which I still need to master more. But, that role will be great for me and manageable once A+++ in executing all areas :)
Saturday 5th March
Last day today, based on shore, a Radio course - to which I got 19.5 out of 22 in the exam (like being at school) and now I have a radio licence on it's way........Clipper Clipper Clipper this is Jussie Jussie Jussie..Over.
Sad to say goodbye to everyone...like the same feeling I had after level 1 - but know that whether on my leg/see at ports...friends made for life.
And that's a wrap.......from Janine..Rebecca..Brenda...Doris..!!?? Confused....well wait for next blog installment and I reveal all my 'alter ego's'............apparently ;)